Continuous Improvement with Collaborative AI

Increasing efficiency & safety by using drones for virtual inspections and AI for analysis of the power line maintenance

Energy Industry Digitalisation

Drones in the air!

German power supplier needs to go through a long process of checking the power line and maintaining it. Most of the work was done manually with lots of effort. With new digital solutions, the supplier aims to increase efficiency and safety of the process. Drones are used to take photos of the power poles and AI-powered inspection tools analyses the photos.


Watching with the naked eye

Lengthy evaluation process


The organisation is responsible for supplying a certain part of German households with electricity. Previously the inspection of the power line, on a length of about 700 000 km, was done manually by climbing the poles or from a helicopter, simply by subjective evaluation and entering data into the system. Identifying the defect patterns was low and therefore the organisation did not possess with reliable predictions.

New Solution

Virtual analysis with AI

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The organization sought process enhancement and chose aerial drone footage coupled with AI-driven virtual image analysis through Microsoft Azure. No need to climb the poles! Technicians fly the drones and acquire pictures of key problematic points. Then the AI comes into place to analyze the pictures, sort and evaluate them.

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Efficient Azure Image Workflow

The images taken by the drones are uploaded into Sharepoint and transferred into Azure Data Lake Gen2. Azure Logic Apps assigns the pictures to each power line and pole. Subsequently, the images undergo refinement via Azure Functions and are imported into Cloud-based SaaS Grid Vision® through Azure Event Hubs as instances.

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Smart! Problems Detected by AI

Various Azure services are involved, with Azure Kubernetes Service, Azure Database for PostgreSQL, and Cosmos DB playing significant roles. Next, AI examines the images, identifying potential problems like component issues or power pole damage. An expert user subsequently validates the AI's conclusions before exporting the results to the Cloud, where they are transformed into a checklist.

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Driving Efficiency

The gathered data enhances the inspections of distribution system operators, enabling the transition from periodic to predictive maintenance through identifying defect patterns and making predictions more accurate. Grid Vision®, a widely used utility software, employs AI models supported by expert user input to continually train and improve the AI through a global feedback loop, termed collaborative AI.

More about Microsoft Azure

AI Content Coach 

Integrating ChatGPT into Azure OpenAI Service paved the way for more innovations such as AI Content Coach. The interactive assistant trained on the DAM text content facilitates ideation and content creation aligned with a customer's brand voice, advancing the vision of comprehensive content operations and scalable omnichannel personalization.

Proven competence

Awards & certifications

Microsoft Gold Implementation Partner since 2005
Azure expert certification
Winner - Microsoft Business Process Management and Automation Award

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